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George R.R. Martin’s Turtle Pin at Emmys 2018 Was a Game of Thrones Reference
Getty ImagesNeilson Barnard
Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin hit the red carpet during Monday night’s Emmy Awards, sporting a purple pin shaped like a turtle. And as Time reports, his accessory was a nod to how he came up with Game of Thrones.
On Martin’s website, the author notes he once got a Marx medieval play set, complete with castles and knights. “The Marx castle housed my pet turtles for years and eventually inspired my first epic fantasy tale,” he wrote. “Just like A Song of Ice and Fire, except all the characters were turtles.”
Getty ImagesRich Polk
It turns out the turtles had a lot in common with Game of Thrones characters: They died pretty quickly. “They died very easily and very quickly,” he told IndieWire. “And so my imagination was overheated by that. Why did all my turtles die? Well they were competing for the throne of the turtle kingdom! And they’re killing and murdering each other poisoning each other and stabbing each other in the heart. So Game of Thrones began as Game of Shells.”
What hasn’t been explained is why the turtle is purple. Could it have been a nod to the Purple Wedding, where Joffrey met his untimely end? Or is a nod to the purple sigil from House Dondarrion? (Martin has also said “turtles have always been my sigil,” so perhaps.) It’s probably not that deep, but here’s betting there’s already a Reddit thread trying to figure it out.